The Madras High Court on Friday directed the Chennai Police to take strict action against pillion riding helmet-less on two-wheelers. Under the Section 129 of the Motor Vehicles Act, both the rider and the pillion rider can be booked if they are found without a helmet.
On Friday, a PIL was filed by activist K.K.Rajendran seeking strict implementation of the rules. The petitioner claimed that in 2017 close to 3,000 helmet-less riders have died in road accident. The division bench of Justices S.Manikumar and Subramaniam Prasad said the police act tough only on those who ride motorcycles without a helmet and have been negligent about pillion riders.
The CTPD (Chennai Traffic Police Department) has said they will take strict action against the riders who are found without the helmet and assured they will take adequate measures by spreading more awareness to the public about the need of wearing helmets.
So, with a clear message sent to the police department to implement the law with immediate effect, here’s how you can comply.
Rule #1, Wear Helmet – Close to 2.51 crore motor vehicles are running in Tamil nadu, almost 84 per cent of them are motorcycles. In comparison with 2001, the number of vehicles in 2017 has seen a rapid rise and so does the accidents. According to the Tamil Nadu transport commissioner, approximately 60,000 road accidents occur in Tamil Nadu every year (the most in the entire country) killing 17,000 people. Most of these accidents occur due to the negligence of the rider to wear a helmet.
Rule #2, Wear quality helmets – There are several types of helmets like Open-face, Full-face, Flip-Up, Moto Cross etc. Helmets that do not comply with the norms specified by Indian Standards Institute have been banned by the Indian ministry of transports and Highways this year. If you are found riding with a non-certified helmet, you could be jailed up to two years or incur a Rs 2,00,000 fine. You can cross-check the quality of your ISI-stamped helmet by visiting the website http://www.bis.org.in and enter your ISI and CM/L number or dial 044-22541442, 22541216.
Is there any exception?
According to Motor Act 2015, under Section 129, both the rider and the pillion-rider must wear helmets. However, the parliament has granted certain exceptions. The law states, Sikhs and children below the age of 12 and women are exempted from wearing the helmet when they are a riding pillion. In 2014, Delhi government made helmet compulsory for both the rider and the pillion rider. Other states like Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Uttarakhand have also implemented the law strictly. According to the law brought by Tamil Nadu government in 2007, a community named “Meizhvazhi saalai” is the lone been exempted from wearing helmets in the state.